13 Million Americans May Be Guilty of Financial Infidelity

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When is it acceptable to hide financial facts from partners? Not everyone agrees on the answer.

About 13 million Americans could have bank accounts or credit cards that their partners are unaware of, a new survey indicates.

The CreditCards.com poll found that 1 in 20 respondents living with a spouse or partner admitted to currently or previously having a checking account, savings account or credit card that their significant other didn’t know about.

CreditCards.com explains:

Multiplying that percentage by the number of U.S. adults yields nearly 13 million Americans who are withholding financial information from their loved ones — and that counts only those who confess their secret accounts to a random pollster over the phone.

Approximately 1,000 adults in the U.S., about 700 of whom were currently living with a spouse or partner, were interviewed by phone for the survey.

The survey also found that:

  • 41 percent said their significant other should be able to spend up to $100 without telling them.
  • 24 percent said their significant other should be able to spend more than $500 without telling — with men (30 percent) more likely than women (18 percent) to say they were OK with that threshold.
  • 19 percent admitted to having spent more than $500 without telling — with men (24 percent) more likely than women (14 percent) to have done so.
  • Seniors — defined as people age 65 and older — were the age group most likely (24 percent) to say their significant other should be able to spend no more than $25 without telling them.

Laurie Berzack, a professional matchmaker who founded Carolinas Matchmaker in Charlotte, North Carolina, tells CreditCards.com that she advises couples to address potentially touchy subjects like money early on in a relationship:

“The problem is that a lot of couples don’t have that conversation. They’re afraid to have the money conversation. That’s where people get into trouble and start lying and hurt feelings are created.”

To learn more about love and money, check out:

How much money do you think your spouse or partner should be able to spend without informing you? Let us know below or on our Facebook page.

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